Sure, it’s no tank full of man-eating tiger sharks, but does James Bond have the skill set to win in a court room? They don’t make an exploding pen for that … yet. According to The Hollywood Reporter, MGM Studios and 20th Century Fox are facing a class-action lawsuit over their DVD set Bond 50: Celebrating Five Decades of Bond 007, which reportedly claimed to contain ”[a]ll the Bond films gathered together for the first time.” Washington resident and apparent Bond superfan Mary Johnson brought the lawsuit on her behalf as well as on behalf of similarly affected consumers after discovering that neither 1967’s Casino Royale nor 1983’s Never Say Never Again were included in the set.
Aside from the fact that Casino Royale was a comedy co-starring Woody Allen, both films were also the focus of ongoing controversies regarding their distribution rights. Casino Royale was made by Columbia Pictures, while writer Kevin McClory successfully argued his creative co-ownership of author Ian Fleming’s novel Thunderball, of which Never Say Never Again is an adaptation. MGM has since gained distribution rights over both films, but not before the franchise released its 50th Anniversary box set. In her suit, Johnson claims the misleading description constitutes a violation of Washington’s Consumer Protection Act. In response, MGM told THR, “The James Bond DVD and Blu-ray collections, which clearly list the included films, have been enjoyed by millions of satisfied consumers around the world. We intend to vigorously defend against these frivolous claims.” The case moved to a federal court on Friday, so only time will tell if an invisible car or a powerful knack for seduction will somehow come in handy just in the nick of time.